This year, I have four Thanksgiving dinners to attend. Four separate events with turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, and pumpkin pie. I feel like a Dallas Thanksgiving Delivery Service driver, carting my token green bean casserole around all over the city. Don’t get me wrong, I am so grateful that I have four different sets of families and friends who want to welcome me to their celebration. But I’ll tell you what; my stomach wasn’t made for this kind of action! Four Thanksgivings is a job for a professional eater.
Now, I know we normally save the professional eater glorification for the summer (62 hotdogs in one sitting, anyone?). But it’s the holiday season that really should be the home for these eating enthusiasts. I’ve always wondered where competitive eating got its start. What over-indulgent foodie sat down one day for his sixth helping of mom’s casserole and said, “I’m going to make a sport of this!”? Since Dallas Courier’s Dallas Thanksgiving Delivery Service is up to speed on all things food for the holidays, they have the answer.
In case you haven’t been around since Kobayashi came to reign (and then, swiftly fell off the deep end), and aren’t quite sure what we’re talking about, I’ll explain. Competitive eating is the sport (and I use that term loosely) where people face off against one another in a timed event of all you can eat. It’s usually one specific food (i.e., hot dogs, chicken wings, pie), and it’s a relatively short time period (say, 8 minutes). While contests like pie eating have been around for some time, the longest running eating competition in America is Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest, held on Coney Island every 4th of July since the 1970s. But Asian countries have been following the competitive eating circuit for a lot longer.
As our country became more interested in contests such as this (and probably as our nation became more obese), there came the need for organized events. Enter, the International Federation of Competitive Eating (IFOCE) and Association of Independent Competitive Eating (AICE). These two are responsible for hosting hundreds of eating competitions throughout the world. The main difference between IFOCE and AICE is that the latter does not allow any type of “dunking”. They wish to “maintain the integrity” of the food item, so you won’t see these competitors dipping their corn dogs into lemonade like you would at an IFOCE event. Which is probably a good thing. I think our Dallas Thanksgiving Delivery Service friends can agree that this is one of the things that makes watching these competitions so grotesque.
The players in the competitive eating game can be deceiving. Bigger is not always better. Take Sonya Thomas, for example. She’s the South Korean professional eater who rumbles with the big boys, yet weighs in at less than 100 pounds. Where does she put it all!? Takeru Kobayashi, the record holder in many competitions; everything from cow brains (you probably won’t find that on our Dallas Thanksgiving Delivery Service manifest this year!) to cabbage; weighs just 131 pounds. The eaters themselves say it’s not the size of the body, but the size of the stomach, which, apparently, can stretch after years of practice. If that’s the case, if I continue to attend four Thanksgivings every year, maybe, just maybe, within the next decade I will have room for pumpkin pie by Turkey Day number 3.
Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately) for us, this Thanksgiving you’ll have to settle for good old-fashioned football, as ESPN doesn’t have any eating competitions in the lineup. But, hey, if you’re really that bummed, see if you can propose a pie-eating contest with your family. Just don’t underestimate Grandma- remember, it’s the little ones who always surprise you! Dallas Thanksgiving Delivery Service believes that Thanksgiving is a day for all to indulge- professional eaters and amateurs alike. Whatever your style, enjoy! Just don’t get caught dipping your dad’s fried turkey in lemonade, it might not go over very well.